How to create an effective email launch sequence for your online course

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67% of businesses list email marketing as their highest ROI (return of investment) marketing strategy. When you’re launching your online course, email marketing will be your greatest tool for increasing awareness and boosting enrollments. Whether you’re using a hosting platform or launching from your own domain, you need to generate a huge buzz if you want your course to be successful.

Across the board, email is the most effective way of reaching people since over half of the global population uses it. But for your email marketing to generate conversions, you need to craft your launch sequence strategically. By structuring your launch this way, you’ll set yourself up for success when you’re ready to present your online programme to the world.

Pre-launch sequence

Never wait until you launch your class before you start generating interest about it. A quality pre-launch email sequence is equally, if not more important than marketing post-launch. Your pre-launch sequence is not the place to try to sell your course. The purpose of your pre-launch emails is to showcase your expertise, generate interest in the topic in general and build trust with your audience.

Your pre-launch emails should look something like this:

1. A backstory on you – what’s your why?

Before dropping the news of your online course launch, start by giving your email list a bit of background on you. People want to learn from those they feel connected to and trust, so be genuine. Why are you the authority in this niche? How did you get started on your journey? And what motivates you? You want your email list to see a bit of themselves in you and your story. So go deep into your “why” in this first email.

2. Provide value

The following pre-launch email should provide some valuable information on your course topic. You don’t need to give away too much information for free, but including a teaser from one of your course modules can help showcase your expertise on the subject. If you post content elsewhere, you could also link to it, such as blog posts, video tutorials or links to download resources.

You can also use this email to let your list know that you have a special announcement coming up for those interested in learning more about the subject. Including a countdown timer for your announcement can also help generate anticipation.

3. The announcement

Once you’ve warmed up your email list, you can now drop the bomb that you’re launching a course. You want to create exclusivity here by letting your subscribers know that they get first access and what date they will have access to the platform. You can also include information about what will be in the course and how it could benefit them.

Launch email

Your email subscribers are now aware that you’re launching a course, so now the fun begins. Once your class is live, it’s time to let your email list know. If you had a countdown timer on then interested parties might already be waiting for the launch. The first launch email should let them know that your course is live and how they can enrol.

You can create a sense of urgency by offering your email list a discount for a limited time to start generating enrolments faster. This email should give a thorough breakdown of the modules included in the course and what they can expect their ROI to be.

Post-launch sequence

Chances are that a good portion of your email list will need more convincing before enrolling in your online course. After you launch, you need to continue to nurture your subscribers to showcase the benefits of investing in your programme. 

Your post-launch sequence should look something like this:

1. Answer questions/FAQ

After you launch, you should use the following email to answer any questions that may be preventing people from investing in your eLearning course. Maybe they want to know how long it will take them to complete the modules or if they need to have previous knowledge of the subject to understand it. Try to be as thorough as possible here and do some research to determine any objections they may have to purchasing your programme. Quora or Reddit are excellent forums to ask these kinds of questions, or you could poll your social following.

2. Testimonials

People are much more likely to invest in an online programme if others recommend it. Have a few people beta test your class in exchange for providing a testimonial and include those in an email to your subscribers. Showcase how your programme helped others and what they’ve been able to achieve as a result.

3. A friendly reminder

Lastly, send out a friendly reminder to your list that if they want the early bird discount, they need to act fast. You can include a timer here as well. This is the final push in your launch sequence to convert anyone on your list who has yet to enrol.

Tips and tricks for your email launch sequence

  • Don’t make your emails too long. Try to keep them around 500 words or less.
  • The highest email open rates are on Wednesdays and Fridays, around 10 am, so aim to send out your emails around this time (although you should always try to track your own stats for better results).
  • Don’t forget to use mixed media. Including pictures, infographics or videos in your emails will make them more engaging for your subscribers.
  • Don’t email your list too frequently. You definitely shouldn’t be sending out more than one email a day, even in the week leading up to your launch. If you drown your list with emails, they are more likely to unsubscribe.
  • Use engaging subject lines that will encourage your email list to open your emails.

You should always find ways to mention your online course in future email sequences, web content and social media posts. But a successful email launch sequence will set the tone for the long-term performance of your course and enable you to start collecting data, optimising your course and generating passive income fast.

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